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(1) can a single wire, e.g. copper wire, support full duplex transmission?

(2) still a single single wire, can it support transmission of multiple bits at a time in one direction?

(3) USB supports serial transmission, theoretically a single wire is enough. But why it has so many wires? ---I am not an electrical engineer, this question might sound too simple.

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  • "I am not an electrical engineer" This question is really more on-topic for our sister site, Electrical Engineering.
    – Ron Maupin
    Apr 28, 2023 at 13:11

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A 'single wire' as such isn't possible. At the very least, you require a signal wire plus a ground connection for single-ended signaling, or a twisted pair for differential signaling. Fiber can use a single strand, of course. And there's wireless.

  1. yes, using either echo cancellation (e.g. 1000BASE-T), frequency-division duplex (e.g. xDSL) or (for fiber) wavelength-division duplex (e.g. 1000BASE-BX10)
  2. yes, using MLT, PAM or a more complex multi-bit modulation (esp. QPSK or QAM)
  3. copper very often uses differential signaling over twisted pairs for cost reasons, USB is off topic here though

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